What is the Student Technology Fee?
The Student Technology Fee (STF) Advisory Committee was established in 2002 to develop the College’s plans for use of the revenues from the new student technology fee adopted by the University Board of Trustees. The committee was charged with developing a budget plan in accordance with guidelines established by the University as to the expenditure of these funds and to maximize input across the College community. In 2018, the STF Committee became a subcommittee of the BCC Technology Oversight Committee.
The STF plan supports the purchase of technology related equipment, software, and/or services used in direct support of student instruction in the following categories:
- Classroom / Lab enhancements and instructional equipment/software/services
- Collaboration / Feedback technologies
- Blended / Online learning technologies
- Assessment of learning
- Digital content for learning
- Co-curricular support
STF proposals are reviewed and shortlisted by a committee which consists of BCC students, faculty and administrative staff. Every year, the committee, oversees budget allocation and approves projects that merit funding.
Frequently Asked Questions
Eligibility & Conditions
In order to be eligible for an STF grant, applicants must submit a proposal and represent a BCC department, unit, sub-department, division, or committee. Applications will be considered under the following conditions:
- Funds should support the use of technology to benefit BCC students in innovative and/or significant ways. In this context, significance may be understood to imply either impact on a large number of students or a deeper impact on smaller number of students.
- Funds must be used to directly benefit students in meeting the educational goals of their academic programs or to advance the co-curricular goals of the BCC Experience.
- Proposals should be for projects contained within a single fiscal year.
- Projects that receive funding may submit requests for continued funding in subsequent years, but will not receive priority in the review process. Subsequent year proposals must include a measureable assessment of the earlier year’s results.
- Proposals submitted by a student or student organization must identify a staff or faculty sponsor willing to accept responsibility for the appropriate use of the funding and fulfilling all reporting requirements.
- Funds may be used to purchase software for use by students or to significantly improve the student experience. Ongoing costs of the software (annual maintenance or renewal fees) must be paid for from other sources.
- Funds may be used for hardware and network-related expenditures that include support of general purpose or special purpose classrooms and computer laboratories used by students for general productivity and/or more discipline-specific activities. Proposals to fund classroom hardware should be prepared in consultation with the Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology (CTLT).
- Proposals must be complete. Incomplete proposals will be disqualified and returned to the applicant without review.
- Expenditures for the proposed project must be incurred prior to the end of the fiscal year (June 30th). No additional project/budget extensions will be granted.
- Applicants must propose projects that are not currently fully or partially funded by the College and/or external funding programs.
- Almost all activities on campus are somehow ultimately related to students. However, only proposals that provide fairly direct and immediate benefit to students will be considered.
- Proposals previously submitted, but not funded for any reason, do not automatically get considered in subsequent years. A new proposal must be submitted.
- Allocations are based on the proposal’s good-faith estimates, which should preferably be based on actual price quotes where possible.
Acceptable Uses of STF Funds
- Acquiring or upgrading student accessible computers.
- Acquiring or developing new tools to improve student services.
- Acquiring equipment or software to support faculty development of new or improved courseware.
- Acquiring or upgrading instructional software.
- Upgrading instructional spaces to support technology-assisted learning.
- Computer furniture and network/phone cabling.
- Acquiring technology tools to support college-sponsored student activities.
- Requests for multiple years of funding will be entertained, but are less likely to be approved.
Unacceptable Uses of STF Funds
- Supplies, other than an initial small starter supply for a new piece of equipment.
- Construction or other infrastructure needs, such as HVAC, electrical work, painting, window shades etc.
- Salaries or stipends – neither P/T nor F/T – for lab-tech, lab-support, or other implementation or support needs.
- Equipment or software for faculty research or private faculty use.
- Requests to utilize STF funds to replace or subsidize standard budgeted expenditures for college operations.
Process & Selection
The STF subcommittee will review the applications by the end of March and forward recommendations for funding to the Technology Oversight Committee. .Each SFT Committee member reviews submitted proposals and scores each one on a scale of 1 (very weak) to 5 (very strong) on each of the following criteria:
- Overall Impact: Does the project fit within the Criteria for STF Expenditures?
- Significance. Does the proposal impact a large number of students or does the proposal have a deep impact on a smaller number of students?
- Innovation. Does the proposal seek to advance the use of technology in the service of teaching and learning or to advance the co-curricular goals of the BCC Experience?
- Approach. Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project?
- Investigator(s). If a student or student organization submits the proposal, is there a faculty or staff sponsor identified? If the investigator/author of the proposal has received Student Technology Fee funding in the past, have they completed the final report and/or any other required reporting?
- Support. Have the appropriate stakeholders been involved in the planning, to ensure success of the project? Examples include Student Life, Physical Facilities, IT Services, etc. If there are ongoing costs, has a source for those been identified?
The Technology Oversight Committee submits the STF Plan to the President who makes the final selection and notify the applicants directly. All applicants will be required to submit a final report for their project by end of fiscal year.
Funding & Procurement
Proposals approved for funding still need to go through the standard CUNY procurement process, which can be time consuming and require adherence to many arcane regulations. This requires your cooperation now and during the procurement process in the following year. Approved proposals that cannot be successfully procured by March of the spending year are subject to forfeiture and the funds allocated to other queued proposals.
The STF committee reviews each proposal in the Spring and assigns one of the following determinations to each: Approved in whole or in part, Declined, Held in queue for possible funding later in the year. The decision will be communicated in writing to each submitter, typically within one month after the decisions are made.
Proposals submitted now will be executed and funded in the next fiscal year. Those funds do not typically start arriving until Fall of that year, and are collected throughout the year (Fall and Spring). While every effort will be made to initiate purchases as quickly as possible, most purchases will not be completed in time for the Fall term, and some may have to be deferred to Spring. Please keep this in mind when planning your Fall semester programmed classes.
CUNY requires that STF funds be expended in the year they are collected. Therefore, if IT or College Purchasing determines that a purchase is not practically attainable in the necessary timeframes, the allocations may be rescinded and the funds reallocated to other queued projects. Proposals are approved only for the items requested. Any subsequent cost savings return to the general STF fund for reallocation. Funding allocations are based on the proposal estimate and may not increase to cover any subsequent price increases.